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Labor Day- Willamette/ Dundee Wine Tasting Rec's

Not rude at all, thanks for the tips. I think the problem was I planned thinking it would probably just be my husband and I who can afford nice wine/ tastings. When family who are on a limited budget and not that into wine came it changed the dynamic. I still think $15 for tasting 4 wines and offering no discounts is pretty steep, but maybe that is just for labor day weekend. And I hate getting attitude from wineries. None of the wineries seemed that crowded but I am used to California. Maybe we will try it out another time.

Sep 10, 2009
figg in Pacific Northwest

Labor Day- Willamette/ Dundee Wine Tasting Rec's

Thanks for the tips. I wanted to do a quick update after my tasting trip. First, I was surprised by the lack of value at the wineries I went to. Tastings were $10-15 and then generally no or very little discount on wines. At Domaine Serene the tasting is only complimentary with a half case purchase, I think the other wineries required a $100 purchase. We went to 4 wineries and ended up having a group of 6 people, some who had never been wine tasted before.

Domaine Drouhin- They were tasting 1 chardonnay and 2 pinot noirs for $10. They have a really nice patio. Staff was indifferent and when we asked if Domaine Serene was open they talked bad about it, which struck me as a bit unprofessional (but maybe we should have listened). I did enjoy their pinots but was not blown away by them.

Domaine Serene- Tasting 1 chardonnay, 2 pinot noirs and 1 syrah for $15. This place was universally despised by my group, mainly because of the pretentious/ rude staff. I did really enjoy one of their pinots and inquired about a case but they do not discount at all for cases (and when I asked the price I got a ton of attitude). The other 3 wines were pretty mediocre.

Erath- 3 wines complimentary, $10 winemaker's choice tasting & $15 pinot tasting. This was the crowd favorite. Friendly staff, good value on the tasting, and a wide variety of wines. My husband did the winemaker's choice flight and I did the pinot tasting. We ended up going home with a couple pinots and had a lovely picnic on their patio. (fyi- we asked if we could picnic at domaine serene and they said not because it attracted flies)

Dobbes- 1 complimentary "wine by joe" wine and a $10 tasting flight with I think 4 wines, including a late harvest viognier. This winery offers 2 lines of wine. One is "wine by joe" and is more affordable. The other is Dobbes family. This was a selection made by someone else in my group. I was not that impressed with their wine. The staff were friendly and the place was easy to access.

I would love to try out some more Oregon wineries on a future visit (my husband is from Oregon) but I left a bit underwhelmed by my first trip. Unfortunately, Archery Summit was closed.

Sep 09, 2009
figg in Pacific Northwest

Labor Day- Willamette/ Dundee Wine Tasting Rec's

My husband and I will be tasting in the Willamette Valley on Labor Day. We plan to stop at 3 wineries on our way from Newport to Portland. I was really excited to try Domaine Drouhin and Archery Summit, after reading this board and Wine Spectator. It turns out Domaine Drouhin will be open labor day (they are normally closed Mondays) but Archery Summit is closed (when they are normally open). Now I am down to 1 winery.

Any recommendations for the other 2 wineries? We are pinot fans and wine taste frequently in California. We may have a few other family members with us who are wine novices.

Thanks in advance.

Sep 02, 2009
figg in Pacific Northwest

Help find good bakery in North O.C.!

I went to a shower with desserts from Zovs and they were some of the best I've ever tasted. They have Tustin and Irvine locations so it might be too far. We had lemon cake, keylime pie, chocolate bombs and all sorts of other delicious treats. I think the different locations carry different items although I heard Tustin is the best.

http://www.zovs.com/

Aug 25, 2009
figg in Los Angeles Area

Happy Hour in LB?

Tantalum is swanky and I like it for happy hours because of the view. It is in Marina Pacifica.

http://www.tantalumrestaurant.com/

Aug 17, 2009
figg in Los Angeles Area

Bistro LQ

Just noticed they have a vegetarian tasting menu. I may have to check this out.

Jul 30, 2009
figg in Los Angeles Area

Girl's Night Out- somewhere between west hollywood, long beach & claremont??

I'm planning a Friday night dinner for a group of mid-20's women. After several moves between us, we are now living in west hollywood, long beach and claremont. The girls want somewhere in between us all. Staring at google map, this seems to leave us around Whittier. Is there anything decent and fun that would be relatively convenient for all of us? We have a few vegetarians. We want a good atmosphere, good food, and a place that serves alcohol.

Thanks!

Nov 13, 2008
figg in Los Angeles Area

Santa Barbara County- Celebration of Harvest

My wine supply is low so I had planned to drive up Saturday for a day of wine tasting in the Santa Ynez Valley. However, I heard the "Celebration of Harvest" is going on this weekend. Has anyone been to this before? At $65 it seems pretty steep, despite the promise of "toe tapping music." I am also worried all the wineries will be packed. The Vintner's Visa looks like a good deal if I planned to spend more than 1 day tasting.

http://www.sbcountywines.com/events/c...

Oct 08, 2008
figg in California

OC: Looking for Tasty Take Out Food in Huntington Beach - HELP !

If they like Indian I think Bukhara is perfect. My family does take out from them for all our big get togethers.

May 06, 2008
figg in Los Angeles Area

Best Mexican food in the OC

Nope. Funny though. I am a surfer from HB and never put the 2 together . . .

May 06, 2008
figg in Los Angeles Area

Where to eat in Seal-Huntington-Newport?

I'm must agree that the food options are a bit dismal in HB. When I have friends in from out of town I usually recommend Dukes. The food is average but the view is great (right on the ocean.) On the other side of PCH is Fred's Tacos. It is a younger crowd and has a bar scene. I think the Mexican is decent and you can get a view on the outdoor patio. They have good margaritas.

Up further on Main Street you have Tuna Town, a pretty good sushi place. Also someplace I don't eat at regularly but friends from out of town seem to like it. It is owned by the drummer of the band Korn and has a huge jelly fish tank. For breakfast you should try Sugar Shack if you can. It is one of the few non-chain restaurants on Main Street (and owned by a local family). Unfortunately it is pretty touristy so you need to get there early. A good lunch spot if you do a day at the beach is Jan's Health Bar. It is farther up Main Street and has great sandwiches. The coffee shop inside Huntington Surf and Spot is good.

Also agree you need to stop by the Wahoo's on Main Street.

May 04, 2008
figg in Los Angeles Area

Vegetarian Backpacking for 1 Month

Thanks! I am lacto-ovo vegetarian, meaning I do eat eggs and dairy but no fish, meat or poultry. I had problems in southeast asia where everything was cooked in fish sauce and am worried I would encounter similar problems in China.

Glad to know I can live on noodles and tofu (which sounds excellent). Thanks for the heads up on Xi'an. I usually pack some food with me just in case but want to be able to enjoy local cuisine as much as possible.

May 03, 2008
figg in China & Southeast Asia

Best live/eat neighborhood in LA

(I am stealing this idea from the Boston board.)

I am moving back to LA this summer after years of living in places with good public transportation (Boston and San Francisco). I will be working downtown so I am hoping for a decent commute. I want a wide range of price options and types of food. I would love a place where I won't even have to (or want to) drive on the weekends (not sure if that is possible in LA). I also love having a local independent coffee shop where I can walk in and the workers know me. So basically some place friendly with good food, all in walking range. I want to avoid chain restaurants and the really trendy places.

Thanks!

May 02, 2008
figg in Los Angeles Area

Best Mexican food in the OC

My favorite "hole-in-the-wall" is Fiesta Grill on 17th in Huntington Beach. It is next to a laundry mat I use so I always grab food there on laundry days.

I tried La Choza once and thought it was pretty good.

I have to agree with Javiers as the best upscale. I go to Gabbi's fairly regularly because Orange is convenient for many friends to meet me but I have never been incredibly impressed.

May 01, 2008
figg in Los Angeles Area

Coolidge Corner Celebration Dinner for 12

Tapas sounds like a great fit. The Spanish food is much better in Boston than California. I read that Taberna de Horo had some some problems with snooty services, which I would like to avoid for this dinner. Has that problem been remedied?

May 01, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

Coolidge Corner Celebration Dinner for 12

Looking for a good place for a celebration dinner in Coolidge Corner. There are a lot of out of town guests coming so I would like someplace special. I am not too concerned with price but definitely want something casual. The group has 2 vegetarians and 2 teenagers. I am hoping for a really fun place with good food. I would probably not want Asian or Mexican because I have guests from California.

I would prefer Coolidge Corner because some of the guests fly in that night and will probably be tired. I am willing to take a quick T ride for someplace perfect.

May 01, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

Vegetarian Backpacking for 1 Month

I will be spending one month backpacking in China this summer. As the backpacking may imply, I will be doing mostly budget eating. I am not sure exactly where I will end up, but I plan to hit the main spots: Beijing, Xi'an, Shanghai, and Hong Kong, as well as some off the beaten track destinations.

How difficult will it be for me to keep a strict vegetarian diet? Any particular dishes I should ask for? Stay away from? I imagine the cities will be more accommodating.

Thanks!

Apr 26, 2008
figg in China & Southeast Asia

Car-less conventioneer CH ISO great food

I think you are on the right track in focusing on Asian and Mexican food. I am from LA and going to grad school in New England. I gave up trying to find comparable Asian or Mexican out here. Since I've been on this coast awhile, I can't help with specific recommendations.

Enjoy your trip.

Apr 24, 2008
figg in Los Angeles Area

LA Hound seeks Recs

LA transplant here. Avoid the Boston Mexican and Asian, it is far superior in LA. I recommend sticking with Italian, Spanish, and seafood. I would suggest a nice Italian restaurant in the North End, such as Terramia. It is by no means trendy but you can't replicate it in LA.

Agree completely on ditching the car unless the wedding is out of town.

Mar 16, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

St Patty's Day

I have an out of town friend in town this weekend, and it happens to be St. Patrick's Day. We are dining that night at Oleana. Any suggestions for pubs to celebrate at afterwards?

Mar 11, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

LA Hound in Boston all week need recommendations

I am from LA and recommend avoiding the Mexican and Asian here. That said, Boston has some really great Italian, seafood and Spanish.

Hope you have a good trip.

Mar 09, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

Graduation Dinner for 11

I am graduating in June and looking for a restaurant that is not too formal, will give my out of town family a good Boston experience, and is vegetarian friendly. The ages range from a grandma to 2 teenage cousins. We are staying in Brookline (school is in Cambridge) but could really go anywhere. I assume I will want to avoid Cambridge because of the crowds. I was thinking that Italian in the North End would fit the bill but I am open to other suggestions. I don't have a price restriction, just hoping for something that appeals to everyone. Also not sure how early I will need to make recommendations.

Mar 08, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

Where have you always had a bad meal?

Cambridge Commons is consistently bad. It is the default spot for many of my friends because it is close, decently priced, and you never have to wait.

Feb 26, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

Where Did You Go For Valentine's Day (If Anywhere)?

We went to Small Plates. I love it there more each time I go. They had a $40 prix fix menu that was incredible. Menu is here, on the last page http://www.smallplatesrestaurant.com/....

As usual, the service was perfect. The restaurant was full but not overly busy and we still had attentive service. I never got the sense they wanted to rush us out to get another table in. It reminded me that it is possible to enjoy a nice Valentine's meal.

Feb 15, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

dinner on OC/LA border area

Depends on where along the OC/LA border you are looking. If Long Beach works, I would recommend Open Sesame. It is Lebanese food on Second Street in Belmont Shore. The food is excellent and the place is really cute inside. Although it is a bit cramped and service is sometimes slow. When I lived in Long Beach I took people there all the time and they loved it. http://www.opensesamegrill.com/about_...

There is also Phuket Thai on Second Street. I think the food is quite good there as well, with good service, although the decor is unimaginative.

Feb 13, 2008
figg in Los Angeles Area

group of 25...Harvard Sq? dinner friday

This is a tough one. Possibly Grafton Street, which is not my favorite, but seems to meet your criteria.

Also, are we talking this Friday?

Feb 13, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

Fine dining options for vegetarians and vegans?

Thai is actually really tough for vegetarians because they cook everything in fish oil. I always ask for no fish oil but I am suspicious as to whether they follow that. When I was in Thailand I had to learn to say "no fish oil" in Thai, which was all the Thai I learned.

Feb 08, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

Fine dining options for vegetarians and vegans?

I'm with jpcat. I love tofu. You probably just haven't tried any that was well prepared.

Feb 08, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

Fine dining options for vegetarians and vegans?

Excellent topic. I moved here from San Francisco and haven't found anything comparable to Greens and Millennium. Radius has a vegetable tasting that was excellent- highly recommended. I went to Toro tonight and was impressed, especially since Spanish is often difficult for veggies. They have a vegetarian paella and several veggie tapas. It's been awhile but I remember Chez Henri having a good vegetarian plate, although they only had 1 option.

I would love to find a veg place with really good tofu offerings.

Feb 07, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area

I heart Petsi Pie

I've been to the Putnam Street one and if I remember correctly it was a cute cafe. I got some lunch and coffee and worked there for awhile. Does the Beacon St location also have a decent seating area?

Feb 02, 2008
figg in Greater Boston Area